I’m seeing a lot of (mostly fake) outrage about the _Naked Education_ show in Europe wherein some people appear naked and answer kids’ questions about the body, sex, etc.
I wonder how these people who are so outraged would fare in cultures wherein nudity, full or partial, is normal. Probably not well. What’s funny to me is that these people seldom bat an eye when films about cultures wherein nudity is the norm, are shown to children. As someone once said, “White women’s breasts are pornography, but Black women’s breasts are just anthropology.” The same goes for “white” and Black men’s genitals as well.
Judginess aside, I think much of the problem is also that in the vast majority of cultures wherein nudity is normal, pedophilia and even ephebophilia (desire for very young but pubescent/post pubescent youth by older people) are very rare. In the latter case, some people we’d consider too young (18-23ish) consider themselves marriageable age, but even this is rare. Average ages of marriage hold in the mid 20’s despite everybody’s stuff being all out in the open.
The reason why is very likely because you can’t hide when you’re naked. I think it’s more the lack of ability to hide their true desires that disturbs western and westernized people the most about nudism. Most of the outrage comes from the same people who want girls to be allowed to marry at 12 and not be able to get a divorce regardless of being abused and misused (American republicans). So they’re complaining about people receiving a truthful education about sex, but the same kids should be married off (often by force) and also forced to birth babies? Doesn’t make any sense to me.
And don’t get me started on the outraged Muslims. (I know not all Muslims are conservative or outraged. I am specifically talking about the ones who are both conservative and outraged.) They’re not complaining that a child is being exposed to nudity so much that anyone is seeing anyone else naked, but since it gets clicks from “white” America, let’s throw in the children that they would happily see betrothed at 6 and consummated and making babies by 12.
The only ones I have sympathy for at all in this debate is people who have been damaged by predatory people. They and their loved ones who know what real trauma is and know what real predators are like are the only ones who should have any voice in this. The only problem is that many have trouble articulating what it is they really want to say because they are so used to nobody listening.
So I will speak from my experiences and my trauma.
I am uncomfortable with westerners making a public spectacle of nudity and nudism. I am happy that the nudist movement exists, and see this as a kind of a goal that western society should reach for: a world where everyone feels free and SAFE to be in any state of dress or undress anywhere, and where nobody can hide.
A world where if someone is having issues with impulse control or inappropriate (non consensual) orientation leanings, that is found out early, and some kind of sane intervention is done to keep them from acting on their impulses.
However, we are not there yet. As things are, predatory behavior is not being properly regulated in western cultures, so the good shows like _Naked Education_ can do is extremely limited. People will not only miss the point entirely, but their minds, either due to their own perversion (most cases) or trauma (very few but most important cases) will jump to a “predator mill” scenario. They just won’t get it and aside of filling the internet with noise, the subtext of that noise is painful for those of us who grew up around too many predators in hiding.
Kicking this can of worms brings out all the people whose names I won’t mention, who are predators just waiting to be found out; future headlines of some CSA or family murder who are just at the moment, moralizing against every marginalized group they want to scapegoat for their own perverse obsessions.
The day _Naked Education_ will be useful, and the dialogue around it non traumatic for those of us whose voices should count the most, but are too often drowned out by hype, will be the day it can just be called _Education_. The day a summer school teacher in New Jersey can show up to class with boar tusk earrings, and a waist chain of beads, perhaps with a gourd tied over his package if that, and nobody bats an eye because that’s his traditional clothing. That will be when this will be useful.
Until then, let’s work for that world in actually constructive ways like universal health care including mental health, and abolition with a long term mind for both human rights and legal validation of community justice.